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Discussion Forum - Events - Standards of Behaviour

Posted: Mon 25th Apr 2005, 15:11
Joined: 2000
It is my understanding that we have the right to go round ALL obstructions. this implies that an obstruction moves the right of way, and thus we are not walking on private land at all, but a public highway. We owe ourselves a duty of reasonble care when walkking, but cannot be expected to take responsibilty for the negligence (accidental or deliberate) of others.
Posted: Tue 19th Apr 2005, 10:31
Joined: 1972
Some good points raised here. Gates are always an issue particularly on events when stiles cause queues. On the Wellington Boot the stiles were of an extra-ordinary height; those of the squeeze type were not for the obese, and the kissing gates excluded the rucksack challenged.

When a callow youth amd a member of the Rambler's Association being tutored in the art I was instructed that an experoenced walker should always climb a gate at the hinge end so reducing leverage on that part.

As for being quests on the farmers land. No. Not really. Paths are public rights of way though of course rights also imply duties and should generally be exercised with courtesy and sensitivty to any genuine issues raised by land owners.

Maybe it is time for walk orgainisers to remind walkers of good practise in " gate etiquette" and ensure that sweepers of the k route ensure that it is left in a good state. As an organisation we do need to retain and build on what has been in my experience a good relationship with rural communities.
Author: Ian Koszalinski
Posted: Tue 19th Apr 2005, 9:59
Joined: 2004
Local Group: High Peak
I think breaking rules, and unacceptable behavoir should be treated differently, unless of course a short cut takes you over private land, which looks bad for the LDWA , if you break the rules, such as short cuts,or a lift you're only cheating yourself. Unacceptable behavoir is as it says unacceptable and should be punished, take their LDWA number and send them a warning,that this is not tolerated, tell them any reoccurance and they will be expelled unless they can give a reason for their actions, of course not everyone on a challenge walk is a member, but a strongly worded letter should be sent outlining our position.
Author: Paul Sorensen
Posted: Tue 19th Apr 2005, 8:49
Joined: 1987
Local Group: Dorset
This and other topics on the forum lead me to ask another question. What should organisers do when they do find someone either breaking the rules or failing to reach standards of behaviour that we should expect from them? I expect this question will provoke all sorts of responses so I will put my head back beneath the parapet :O)
Author: Chris Chorley
Posted: Mon 18th Apr 2005, 17:29
Joined: 1982
Local Group: Norfolk & Suffolk
On the Wellington Boot we found many unsecured field gates. The rope or binder twine was just lying there, gate latches were in perfect working order. The owner must have left them secured. There were some gates in the area which tied open (presumably by the landowner) - sensible if you want the gate to stay that way. Worryingly, in one section a 5-bar gate and hand gate to the road from a field with several horses in it was unsecured. Just after that a hurdle across the path was no-longer tied to the fence. There were two gates, either side of a sheep field, which were not secured by their latches, a push opened them. Equally, a push easily secured them by their latches. Entrants complain about rules for events and the equipment they should carry. With walkers like those in front of us on the Boot who can't be trusted to follow the simplest of rules (countryside code and common sense) then what hope for us when rules are relaxed ? I now have doubts about taking any event route through a stock field, I couldn't honestly tell any farmer that his stock will be safe. The call 'Gate !' is commonly heard - but do you make sure that the gate which *you* untied has been fastened ?
Author: Amesbury Walkers
Posted: Sun 17th Apr 2005, 20:44
Quite agree with Paul's comments re cutting across fields but it raises another point.
Several years ago I approached a local farmer to use his track around the edge of a field. I knew it was not a public right of way and assumed I would get a straight 'yes' or 'no' answer. What followed ensured I wouldn't ask again! He was quite happy to allow us to use the track but rightly pointed out that it was private ground and would need written notice from us that should an accident occur he would not be held responsible - OK by me but I didn't realise that his Solicitors would draw up the wording!! It was all conducted quite jovially and at no expense to us, the farmer admitted to paying for the agreement!
On a slightly different point. If we go around the edge of a field because the ROW is blocked across it with growing crops are we doing the right thing? Common sense says yes but should anything happen whilst on private ground.....
Author: Peter Haslam
Posted: Sat 16th Apr 2005, 10:00
Joined: 1992
Local Group: East Lancashire
Organic or not they should not be left. If you want to re-cycle take them home and start a compost heap, much better all round.
Author: Matthew Hand
Posted: Fri 15th Apr 2005, 22:37
Joined: 2001
Local Group: Mid Wales
Bannana skins - one can easily slip up on them. Are we 'recycling organic waste' or 'litter louts'? Opinions please !!!
Author: Peter Haslam
Posted: Fri 15th Apr 2005, 21:39
Joined: 1992
Local Group: East Lancashire
I too was surprised and disappointed with the climbing over gates and fences at the AGM.

One of my pet hates is litter, how is it that people can carry a full banana up a hill, but an empty banana skin is just too heavy to carry down again? Perhaps I should audition for "Grumpy Old Men"
Author: David F Yorston
Posted: Fri 15th Apr 2005, 13:57
Joined: 1992
Local Group: Beds, Bucks and Northants
well said Paul,I agree with all you say David Yorston
Author: Chris Chorley
Posted: Thu 14th Apr 2005, 20:35
Joined: 1982
Local Group: Norfolk & Suffolk
Peter says something else to farmers to do with another walking organisation which goes down well, and can result in getting facilities like barns for checkpoints and use of private tracks. I have used the same phrase (without knowing Peter at the time) and it also works well in East Anglia. The second part is to say that we just want to walk from that road/path there to that one over there, and that we don't really want to walk through the farmyard at midnight on the RoW. Generally gets us a better route and good relations with the farmer !
Posted: Thu 14th Apr 2005, 17:23
Joined: 1985
No, Paul. You are not alone. You are making a very necessary stand for the long-standing LDWA tradition of consideration for other countryside users. We would all do well to remember Peter Morrill's opening gambit to farmers and shepherds when planning the route of the Northumberland Hundred, namely: "We are guests on your land".
Tom Sinclair 7383
Author: Paul Sorensen
Posted: Mon 11th Apr 2005, 18:44
Joined: 1987
Local Group: Dorset
Are LDWA members responsible? Do we follow the Country Code? I ask this because I am getting more than a little fed up with the falling standards in behaviour of my fellow LDWA members. Am I alone in being annoyed with members who insist on clambering over gates and fences rather than use appropriate stiles or kissing gates? Even at the LDWA AGM I was shocked to see members climbing gates and fences rather than wait in turn to use the stile or kissing gate. I challenged some, but they did not believe they were doing anything wrong, one even blaming the land owner for not making a kissing gate bigger! On my last event I challenged an entrant who repeatedly insisted on cutting across every field rather than following the path around the field edge. Damage to the crop? Annoying to the land owner? Does this behaviour make us more popular with land owners? If we value the countryside that we enjoy walking through, should we not show more respect for it? I very much hope I am not alone in these views?

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